If you’ve chosen a natural stone like marble or granite for your countertops, you likely love them, so you will want to protect your investment by caring for them correctly. Although correct sealant application will protect your countertops, using harsh cleaners can reduce their effectiveness over time. DIY cleaning of your marble or granite countertops can be very simple when armed with a few tricks of the trade and made quite earth-friendly (and inexpensive) with a few common ingredients and tools you probably already have around the house.
Here are some guidelines from our team at GranitePro. Call 410.870.8546 to ask one of our experts if you have questions about DIY cleaning or maintenance.
The porous nature of natural stone lends to a beautiful final product, but it does require the occasional use of some gentle cleaning materials. These will include:
- Baking soda (flour can be used as a substitute if needed)
- Hydrogen peroxide
- Gentle, unscented liquid dish soap
- Isopropyl alcohol (70%, or diluted from 99% to 70% with clean water)
Other helpful tools to have on-hand include:
- Refillable spray bottle
- Plastic cling wrap
- Scotch tape
- Bowl and spoon or spatula
- Microfiber towels, or old, clean cotton t-shirts
3 Marble Countertop Cleaning Tips for DIYers
Although you can buy a commercial cleaner specifically designed for use on marble, any mild, alkaline dish soap will do the job. The following three tips should allow you to tackle any stain on your marble countertops:
1. For general cleaning and maintenance, you simply need to:
- Mix warm water and dish soap in a refillable spray bottle (about a tablespoon of soap to a bottle of water)
- Spray the entire surface area of your countertop
- Wipe up all residue with a clean cloth until dry
- Buff with a soft towel
- Store the remaining cleaning solution for later use
2. For most food or wine-based stains, you can spot-treat the stained area with hydrogen peroxide mixed with a few drops of ammonia.
3. Remember that marble is more sensitive to acid solutions like lemon juice or vinegar and can even contribute to the formation of dull etches that require re-grinding and polishing.
The bacteria-resistant nature of natural stone means you generally don’t need to worry about extensive disinfecting, provided the counter has a solid seal. However, should extra precautions be required, a quick spritz with isopropyl alcohol or antibacterial soap and wipe with a clean cloth is all that is necessary for a little extra protection.
Granite Countertop Cleaning Tips for DIYers
Cleaning and disinfecting granite countertops will be very similar to marble countertops. They can also be kept in great shape with a regular routine of warm water, mild soap, and microfiber towels.
For oil-based stains, you might try creating a poultice of baking soda and water in a bowl (until it is roughly the consistency of Greek yogurt or sour cream). Next, use a flexible spatula to spread on the affected area, cover with plastic wrap, and tape down the edges. Make sure to spot-test a small area first to ensure that the color of the stone won’t be affected. After you apply, let sit undisturbed for a day or two to let the baking soda draw out the stain. Rinse to monitor the results. Difficult stains might require multiple treatments.
For water-based stains, use the same process but substitute hydrogen peroxide for baking soda and water.
GranitePro: Your Granite Experts
Occasionally, even the best-maintained countertops may require professional cleaning and resealing. At GranitePro, our team of in-house artisans is here to help you with all of your marble and granite countertop needs. Call us today at 410.870.8546 for information on how to best care for our natural stone products, keeping them looking as good as new for decades to come.